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Economy & competitive position

Interactive map: See how much the middle class has lost in your county

Middle class’ glory days long past

Michigan’s middle-class families are making do with a lot less money than their parents. The median household income in most counties has plummeted more than $1,000 per month from its peak. In some counties, median household income peaked in 1969 when Richard Nixon was president. All figures in inflation-adjusted 2015 dollars.

Source: U.S. Census, Bureau of Labor Statistics.

7 comments from Bridge readers.Add mine!

  1. Brian

    President Thomas Jefferson on hemp: “Hemp is of first necessity to the wealth & protection of the country.” As long as present day lawmakers are able to keep the people of Michigan from growing hemp for food, (hemp seeds are a superfood) fuel, clothing, housing & medicine etc. – they will continue to have almost complete control over practically every aspect of our lives – including our standard of living. Gotta wonder what Jefferson would say about this man made sorry state of middle-class malaise.

    1. Scott

      When Thomas Jefferson said those words hemp was used for many things, rope lines and that which was used in the sailing merchant marine and the Navy that’s what he was talking about so for that today hemp would be like using sheeps wool. A material that is fare suppressed by modern technologies.

  2. BigDCvx

    No matter whos in power in DC, the federal government takes more and more. Not just in taxes, but in market-crippling policies and incentive-robbing wealth transfer. They need to be REINS’d in…and more.

    Time for a balanced budget Amendment. It won’t be coming from Capital Hill. Support the Article V Convention of States.

    1. Alice

      Tax rates for the top 50% have been going down ever since the 1960s. This has done nothing to create more jobs or improve incomes for the bottom half. All of the “recovery” since the last recession has gone to the top 10%. More of that sort of medicine, supported by so-called conservatives, can only make things worse. Austerity policies don’t work.

      1. Alice in Wonderland


        I’d be interested to hear your explanation as to how sending more money to the Federal government equals higher wages for average Americans.

        1. Allan Blackburn

          In Michigan alone we have $300 million dollar backlog on infrastructure problems at ou parks. Since we rely a lot on our Pure Michigan campaign and tourist dollars, we pay a bit of money to people who are impoverished, disabled, single women and children. How about we have people fix the infrastructure issues like the CCC did early on in our history of parks. Many of those bridges, walkways, walls, etc. are still standing. Create decent jobs with a living wage and people will have wants, wants create demand with some money in the pocket, spurring on the rest of the economy. Or, we could sit around and do nothing but point fingers at who we think is to blame?

          If we could do this in Michigan, imagine what we could do in the country. We claim we need good paying jobs yet, we haven’t had a signed jobs bill in the past 10 years.

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